Her first day on ADHD meds, Amaze Girl refuses pancakes.
Amaze Girl loves pancakes. Stacked, with lots of syrup. She’ll eat two and ask for three more. Sticky gets in her hair, spills to the table, adheres to her chair, drips to the floor.
We open a Vyvanse capsule and pour the contents into a jigger of water. She drinks it. Almost immediately, she heads to the bathroom. Upset stomach.
Later, she reads about sharks on the couch before retreating to her bed for another hour. Her brother-with-autism absorbs her calm and reads quietly too.
On a typical afternoon, Amaze Girl dashes up and down a mountain of dirt where she’s created a throne and firepit. There’s a craft area where she makes laurel wreaths out of leaves. She swings into the sky, jumps on a trampoline, slides over the end of a 3-foot tall plastic pool. She collects bugs, worms and insects; gathers interesting rocks, scrapes them into dust, adds water – and voila! body paint.
Yesterday, as she examined a translucent, green-speckled, very dead cicada, two grubs wriggle free of its body. “Nonnie, come see!” she exclaims. She uses a nail to dissect and impale the insect. Its insides are missing. Had the grubs feasted on it? Do grubs eat cicadas? “Let’s ask Alexa!” she says, referring to a voice operated search engine device.
The creature falls to the earth. She wipes clay-dusty hands on her shorts, hurries inside.
Later, the cicada’s lacy wings become part of her Collection of Interesting Things.
Amaze Girl’s curiosity is vibrant, intelligent, stimulating. Her enthusiasm is vigorous and contagious. I adore this darling girl as she is: brains, beauty, personality. A bundle of kinetic, ever-moving smarts. Squeezable exuberance. Wild, often unfocused, energy.
“Every day (she) forgets to take her (notebook) to specials.”
-Teacher, May 2018
Overwhelming, all-consuming physiological energy can make it hard to sit still, listen and respond appropriately. It can be tough to finish-what-you-start. When a person has difficulty interacting in a way that makes sense to others, educational and social progress may be impacted.
“…she was skipping questions and not reading them. I get a notification when a student clicks through the test…”
-Teacher, April 2018
Amaze Girl’s route to medical intervention began with a perceptive, caring and persistent teacher who recognized intelligence under the frenzy and ability behind the incomplete assignments. Doctors, tests, counseling and a diagnosis followed. Super Daddy researched therapeutic methods and biochemical solutions. He sought professional advice and accepted counsel from those who’ve “been there.”
This first day on medication, Amaze Girl does not swim, jump, climb, build, make. There are no laurel wreaths, thrones, or impaled insects.
There is: quiet. Calm. Sitting. Thinking. Reading. There is dreaming, talking, writing. She plays her piano memory piece all the way through, legato. She floats in the pool, lays on the trampoline, stares at the sky. On top of her mountain, she focuses on a project that involves rocks, nails and sticks. All afternoon.
She sleeps well that night. And the next morning? She eats a stack of pancakes with honey.